Monday, March 9, 2015

Simplifying, with a Few Easy Questions

I don't even know how it happened...but, somehow, over the past few years, we became hoarders.

There was just stuff.  Lots of it.  And a lot of it was just not of any value to us anymore.  But Noah and I both made the excuses.

"We could find a place to use that after we move!"

"Well I used that 2 years ago."

"We can't throw it away...that's the movie stub from our 5th date."

"But Emma Ramey made it."

On, and on, and on.  Finally, after a year of living in a 1200 square foot apartment and bursting at the seams, enough was enough. We both decided that a lot of it just had. to. go.

A couple of months ago, after we decided we would be moving this spring, we decided that we would be simplifying down a lot of our belongings before this move.  There was just no point in lugging around the things we hadn't used since we lived in Tuscaloosa...we had already done that once, and didn't plan on doing it again.

And I am glad to say that the whole process has been a massive success.  There were several important questions we asked ourselves when sorting through what we wanted to keep and what had to go. This is kind of the process I followed...

Easy questions to ask yourself when simplifying and organizing belongings

We really, really tried to limit the items that went into storage or attic...mainly just holiday decorations, baby items that we might use with a future baby, or really sentimental items.  The sentimental category is a tough one because it is so subjective.  For that, I really just tried to save the items from big events or very memorable moments.  It's hard to part with some of those items (especially the ones from when Emmie was really little), but one thing I asked myself was whether or not I would really treasure that item in the future.  If the answer was yes, I usually kept it; no, and it was tossed.

Clothes was another area where we really paired down.  I think this is where I used the thought process above the most; if I wasn't going to wear it in the next year, and/or if I had an acceptable replacement for it, I got rid of it.  This is something I really needed to do (and start thinking about when I shopped) 10 years ago.

There is something that has been so freeing about this!  I don't feel bogged down by "stuff" at all...instead, we've really surrounded ourselves with things we love and use.  I've honestly lost count of how much we've gotten rid of, but I know we've tossed at least 10 bags of trash.  I also have 2-3 bags of clothing that I need to organize into sell/donate piles.

This is going to be an ongoing process.  We're not anywhere close to finished, but man, we've made a lot of progress.  This is something I'm not only going to enforce when purging items in our home, but when we're buying things as well.  It's almost a lifestyle change.  But it's a great one, and one I think is going to benefit our family so much.
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